Thanksgiving was one of Lorrin’s favorite holidays. She loved the smells coming from the kitchen, in the days preparing for a celebration of what we are grateful for. You might think that parents who have unique children do not feel grateful, but I believe parents who live A Unique Life Experience are possibly more grateful for the little things. I have learned that the little things become the big things.
What I really think she loved most were people coming together without any expectations, except good food and cheer, celebrating love and gratitude. For many years I had dinner at my home for the misfits who didn’t have family close by. Family can mean many things and often blood has nothing to do with it. We always had an extended family of nurses and caregivers that were such a huge part of our lives.
I want to share a bit about what I am grateful for. It will be four years this December since Lorrin left her body. I am still recovering from the posttraumatic stress that was my life for 15 years. My body still reacts to old patterns and thought forms. I worked especially hard taking care of my spirit when Lorrin was alive and I know now that I need to work equally as hard every day to keep as emotionally sane, spiritually in tune and physically healthy as I can be. Lorrin was such a spiritual being always comfortable with who she was. In the beginning I learned by her lead and it took me many years of kicking and screaming, complaining and moaning about my situation before I came to the realization, if she wasn’t complaining then why was I?
I believe that I not only survived but also thrived as Lorrin’s mother, by taking care of my spirit and understanding that she was perfect just the way she was. I learned that I had to take care of myself to better care for her, ultimately learning that I had very little control over my circumstances, only in the way I reacted to them.
I spent 15 years mastering my reactions to unbearable situations. Understanding that my thoughts became my reality. I learned that I had better be careful on what I focused upon. I was dedicated to learning all that I could, to keep peace in my brain, body and home. I worked with many different platforms of spiritual based guidance. I have developed a mish mash of tools and beliefs that I use daily to keep my sanity. Just yesterday I worked with Megan who is my energy guru. We have worked on and off together for 7 years. During our phone session I told her, “I am missing it!” I know what I should be doing but I am not getting it. She told me that I had so much stress for so many years that part of my body was reacting to my, “Always being one step ahead of disaster” caregiver lifestyle. I knew back then that I didn’t have control, but I did my best to control what I thought I could; impending hospital stays, trying to keep Lorrin’s body as healthy as possible, which consisted of vitamins, therapies, drops, tinctures, food and of course let us not forget play. Talking to Megan I realized that as I was busy in my new home preparing for winter (which may consist of 4 feet of snow for four months), in doing that I was triggering my old “one step ahead” pattern. And even though I was only storing food it triggered my deep seeded one step ahead of disaster physical response.
Four years after Lorrin’s death I still suffer panic attacks and anxiety. Talking to Megan, she reminded me of the things that I knew but have not been using since my move. I love how the subconscious works; the night before I had a dream and the message was clear as day, “Be in the now, be here now”. With my epiphany I immediately went to a place of, I should know better, but that is just one more way my ego tries to beat me up. My second thought is of all the moms that are still dealing with a fight or flight lifestyle.
So what does that have to do with being grateful? Well, I am grateful that Lorrin loved me enough to pick me, teach me and trust me to take the very best care of her. In doing so I learned many life lessons. I think I am a better person for parenting her, and experiencing all of the ups and downs we shared together. Today, I try my best to take care of myself in honor of Lorrin, who lived in a body that was catastrophically broken without ever complaining. I share my story in the hope that parents, especially moms will take extra time to get in touch with their spirits; be gentle with themselves and slow the trying to be “one step ahead of disaster” lifestyle. Be in the moment and enjoy the simple things, the beautiful memories that are being made right now. Thank you, to all the children who come into this world to teach us a higher meaning. It is an honor and a privilege to be a parent of A Child Living A Unique Life Experience.